Why can’t the Rangers trade any pitchers listed on their 40-man roster? Because no other Major League GM believes an ex-Rangers’ pitcher could pitch for their club, according to team president Nolan Ryan.

For example, relief pitcher Joaquin Benoit could miss the 2009 season after undergoing rotator cuff surgery in January, and the news is almost welcome to the Rangers coaching staff.

“Why would we?” manager Ron Washington asked. “This is great, we get pitchers through our farm system and they get hurt while we trade the good ones for hitters.”

While no one can fault the trade of Edinson Volquez to the Cincinnati Reds for Josh Hamilton, Ryan said fans are now starting to realize that although a good offensive show is fun to watch, pitching wins championships. “They’re staying away in droves,” he said.

Ryan then said that the days of injured pitchers met with joy amongst the coaching staff is over. “We’ve got a new training program in place, and they’re going to get tougher,” he said, adding the team has recently hired two former U.S. Marine Corps drill instructors to put the Rangers pitchers through their paces.

“I’m tired of working on the team other teams threaten to trade their pitchers to if they don’t act right.”


heckler editorial staff